Lakers Press conference...
Lakers PR Director: Good morning everyone and I want to thank you for coming out. First the Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupcheck will be joining us for a brief statement and questions will take place after. So without further hesitation, I'll introduce Mitch Kupcheck and Dirk .
***Mitch walks up with Dirk following***
Mitch Kupcheck: Good morning everyone and i'd like to echo the aformentioned statements and say thank you to everyone for coming out. I know this time a year you guys are as weary as us trying to make every single presser.
The reason we called this was to discuss a few topics and let some questions be asked for our fan base. The first thing I want to discuss is probably the biggest piece of news both literally and figuratively involving our trade of Shaq. We want to thank Shaq for his service and domination through his 2 years as a Laker but we felt it best to move in another direction. One reason why is that if you look at the landscape of the league right now there is a huge disparity in talent level from the top to the bottom. We wanted to have a team in which could take the other team's defense depending on match-upand not really have to depend on one guy. Mostly we felt we were too dependent on Shaq and if he were to go down, our season would go down with him. We're excited to bring a little more defense to the picture bringing Joel up to the 5 spot and were able to instantly create depth by being able to move 2 starters to our bench.
Mitch Kupcheck: The next item on the docket was free agency. We know we have a very... eager fan base which is why we have to address this topic. Now we know we haven't gotten anyone in free agency, but we are and have offered a numbber of contracts. Unfortunately for us, there are a lot of teams with a lot of cap space, so we'll have to find the right fiit. We're really looking for another big body.
Mitch Kupcheck:Now we will move on the the question segment. We have dirk here for questions and myself for team relaated questions.